Draft constitution 'recipe for civil war': As South Africa unveils a blueprint for the future, John Carlin in Cape Town finds anger and dismay after 11 people were gunned down in church

SOUTH AFRICA'S first draft for a democratic constitution was unveiled yesterday at the multi-party national negotiating council and, while it contained significant concessions to right-wing federalist demands, the pro-apartheid Conservative Party (CP) dismissed the document as 'a recipe for civil war',

The Constitution for the Republic of South Africa 1993, as the 43-page document was entitled, provided the framework for a new system of government designed to come into effect in September or October this year after it is endorsed by the current, white-dominated Parliament.

The plan, largely approved by the government and the African Nationalist Congress but rejected by the CP and the Inkatha Freedom Party, is for this constitution to serve during a two-year interim. Then a final constitution is to be adopted by a new government due to be elected in April next year, when all South Africans go to the polls for the first time.

The new constitution contemplates two legislative chambers - a lower house comprising 400 elected members; and an upper house consisting of 10 members elected from each federal region. MPs will be elected under porportional representation. The final constitution would be written by the two houses and would require a referendum with 60 per cent approval for final ratification.

Each region would also have its own legislature and, subject to the principles of the constitution, its own constitution.

The draft constitution contains a list of principles which all parties taking part in negotiations have pledged themselves to observe when the final constitution is drawn up. According to one of these principles, 'The national government shall not exercise its powers . . . so as to encroach upon the geographical, functional or institutional integrity of the 'regions'.'

The purpose of this clause, is to soothe Inkatha anxieties that central government, which they expect to be the ANC, will ride roughshod over the Zulu province they believe they can secure control over in an election.

Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the Inkatha leader, says he will continue to boycott talks. He has rejected the document, citing it as an illustration of what he sees as collusion between the ANC and the government.

Inkatha's CP allies said the draft constitution destroyed all hope of a peaceful settlement. 'It is a recipe for civil war, further economic deterioration and a spiral of violence and crime which will reduce the country to ruin,' said CP leader Ferdi Hartzenberg.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Graduate / Junior Software Developer

£24000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Graduate/Junior Software Deve...

Recruitment Genius: Retail Store Sales Executive

£15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An experienced Sales Executive ...

Recruitment Genius: Night Porters - Seasonal Placement

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Night Porters are required to join a family-ow...

Recruitment Genius: Media Sales Executives - B2B

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Recruitment Genius Ltd continue...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn